Pontiac Vibe Lube Stop Quick ATF Change

Messages
176
Location
Cleveland, Ohio
My Dad has a 2003 Pontiac Vibe AWD with the 4 speed AT. He has close to 70K miles and never changed the ATF. He started noticing it was shifting poorly and was not very responsive. He looked at the owner's manual and noticed it called for a change every 50K. So he went to a quick lube place for a machine flush. I know it's a Toyota powertrain and requires Toyota Type IV ATF. I don't know if those quick places use the right stuff or not...I have heard they used additives to modify to the manufacturer spec. Anyway, the old fluid was black, and since he had the flush, he says he runs great with perfectly smooth shifts. He wants to keep the car a long time and I just want to make sure they didn't put something in that will shorten the life of the trans. Any thoughts?
 
Messages
18,264
Location
Michigan
If they did a good flush of the old stuff, I can't see it hurting. A co worker waited until 105k to change hers (she did the flush too), and almost 10k later, the trans is still doing fine.
 
Messages
9,365
Location
USA
the vibe has a trans plug. when he changed oil, he could have did a trans oil change too? I do my trans fluid every 20k.
 
Messages
1,635
Location
Ontario
If they did a flush there was no way they used Toyota fluid, it costs to much to use for a flush. For a drain and fill they probably will but not for a flush. I can say confidently that they used dexron III with an additive. Most places use it on Toyota's w/o a problem.
 
Messages
25,218
Location
Upstate NY
Unless you do it yourself you never know what they put in. Most of the guys in the quick lube shops are wana be mechanics. In NY they are not licensed repair shops which means they can change fluids, filters and belts, bulbs, but not repair something (like brakes). Oddly they can inspect the brakes are part of a NYS inspection. So they certainly do not want to stock all the various ATFs, so they probably only have a few and as you said, maybe add an additive to make it close to the called for fluid. Even if you bring your own ATF, they would need to purge a few QTs of fluid from the new fluid container or else you will get some of the prior vehicles new ATF. And most quick lube places do not drain and refill the pan first before the flush meaning you need to flush several extra QTs through rather than maybe 1 if you have drained and refilled the pan first.
 
Messages
4,422
Location
Guilford, CT
Which quick lube was this? I know that Valvoline Instant Oil Changes they have some universal ATF that they claim meets about every manufacturers spec, which I personally think is a load of ****.
 
Messages
379
Location
Mi
A flush with the machine will hurt the transmission.Problem with the machine is that it backflushes the dirt,crud,metal shaving and clutch material back in the valve body resulting in sticking valves.It also uses too much fluid.I know a transmission shop in my area doing lots of valve body cleanings,rebuilds due to flushes with the machine.I even had to replace one transmission in a 1999 Monte carlo once,acted up after a flush with the machine.Read some of the factory shop manuals,GM does not recomend flushing their transmissions.Honda does not also fearing transmission damage.A transmission flush with the machine is huge no and waste of money.
 
Messages
9,365
Location
USA
 Originally Posted By: wafrederick1
A flush with the machine will hurt the transmission.Problem with the machine is that it backflushes the dirt,crud,metal shaving and clutch material back in the valve body resulting in sticking valves.It also uses too much fluid.I know a transmission shop in my area doing lots of valve body cleanings,rebuilds due to flushes with the machine.I even had to replace one transmission in a 1999 Monte carlo once,acted up after a flush with the machine.Read some of the factory shop manuals,GM does not recomend flushing their transmissions.Honda does not also fearing transmission damage.A transmission flush with the machine is huge no and waste of money.
exactly. I don't know where all this transmission flushing came from. People will go all out for transmission fluhing, but they balk at Engine flush products.
 

PT1

Messages
5,746
Location
near the mistake
 Originally Posted By: lexus114
roger,roger and dont call me shirley!!
Surely you must be joking... I'm not jokin and quit calling me Shirley as for the OP....I'll bet $50 there is no Toyota fluid in there. Better get the T-IV or WS and start doing drain fills to dilute that stuff out because it is Dex/Merc and a can of LG red at best. Otherwise kiss that AW trans bye bye in about 10,000 miles for sure. FWIW lube stop up here is all Pennzoil...so it is Dex/Merc. You can get the Toyota fluid at Bedford Toyota on Rockside & Broadway.
 
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PT1

Messages
5,746
Location
near the mistake
I just called a local Lube Stop and they only use Pennzoil Dexron "because that is what all the new cars take" SO, I asked if it was DexronIII or Dexron IV and he said "Yes" So I had him go ask the Manager who got on the phone and assured me it didn't make any difference because all the Dexrons are the same but the newer Dexrons have a higher number but they all work just fine...
 
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Messages
25,218
Location
Upstate NY
 Originally Posted By: wafrederick1
A flush with the machine will hurt the transmission.Problem with the machine is that it backflushes the dirt,crud,metal shaving and clutch material back in the valve body resulting in sticking valves.It also uses too much fluid.I know a transmission shop in my area doing lots of valve body cleanings,rebuilds due to flushes with the machine.I even had to replace one transmission in a 1999 Monte carlo once,acted up after a flush with the machine.Read some of the factory shop manuals,GM does not recomend flushing their transmissions.Honda does not also fearing transmission damage.A transmission flush with the machine is huge no and waste of money.
Sorry to correct your reply but you are wrong about how a transmission flush machine works. None do backflushing as you mention. The flush machine merely takes old ATF pushed out through the cooler hose and dumps it into a used ATF bucket and pumps new ATF into the pan so the transmission pump can pick it up (as it normally does) and pump it through the transmission. The flush machine has absolutely NOTHING to do with pumping or backflushing ATF through the transmission. It does what anyone could do by draining ATF out one cooler line and keeping the pan filled with ATF. Now many shops will add a flush agent to the transmission prior to the flush (or kero) and run the vehicle for 20 minutes then do the flush to loosen up crud. There is nothing wrong with the concept of a flush. Where things can go wrong is when you have 150K miles on original fluid (looks like driveway sealer) and someone does a flush without first dropping and cleaning the pan and replacing the filter, since at that mileage it has to be covered with crud. New ATF will loosen up crud in the transmission no matter how the new AFT was introduced (flush or a drain and refill of the pan). The best way to service a transmission is to drain & refill the pan then do a cooler line flush. Few shops bother to drain and refill the pan, they just blast through a few extra QTs of ATF to overcome the mixing that will happen in the pan. If the current ATF was really neglected, then the pan should be dropped and cleaned (filter replaced if a felt filter) and then do the flush. Adding a Magnefine filter during (or at end of) the flush will prevent any loosened crud not flushed out from being recirculated.
 
Messages
25,218
Location
Upstate NY
 Originally Posted By: PT1
I just called a local Lube Stop and they only use Pennzoil Dexron "because that is what all the new cars take" SO, I asked if it was DexronIII or Dexron IV and he said "Yes" So I had him go ask the Manager who got on the phone and assured me it didn't make any difference because all the Dexrons are the same but the newer Dexrons have a higher number but they all work just fine...
And people wonder why we spend extra on Amsoil and do our own cooler line flush!!
 
Messages
8,756
Location
RI
Sad that they couldn't even give you a 'real' answer. Is the manager so illerate that he can't read the barrel???? I would demand to know what the vehicle was filled with exactly. And, if they can't give you an answer, file a complaint with triple-A, BetterBusBur...... Then get it flushed at the dealer with the correct fluid and demand that the shop pay for it for using the wrong fluid. Many shops are already using a universal or multivehicle ATF which IMO would be good enough.
 
Messages
14,013
Location
Retired | Wausau, WI
Pennzoil no longer makes a Dex/Mercon fluid since there is no license for it. Pennzoil makes the following ATF's DEX VI Type F ATF+4 Multi-Vehicle ATF Mercon V Chances are the shop either had DEX VI (which I doubt) or the Multi-Vehicle ATF.
 
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